There’s been quite a delay in my blog entries as of late. Just when I was getting on a roll as well. Unfortunately I’ve
experienced a series of unfortunate events.
Warning: This post really has little to do with any technology information and provides very little useful information whatsoever; but today i’ll vent just a bit.
The Original Problem
It started while at a friend’s house when in a freak accident I tore my Anterior Crucial Ligament (ACL). For those of
you sport buffs (or medically trained) who recognize that term know that I am “out for the season”. Looks like
I won’t be able to become a professional football player after all. As far as I understand the ACL is the main tendon/ligament
that stabilizes the knee.
Accidents happen, and I don’t begrudge any incidents or sulk on the issue; but it is amazing the eye-opening experience
of all the little nuances we realize when experiencing an injury like this. Pain is obvious, but most people can overcome
it, either by toughness or medication. The real awkwardness comes from logistical problems. I feel obliged to cover this
in great detail further down in this article, please bare with me as I continue the timeline.
Recovery, sort of.
In my case I took a week or so to recover from the original injury, get off the crutches, etc. I was however left in a
sport brace and with quite an awkward limp as well as a bit of loss of motion in my leg/knee.
You have to make a decision, do you want to have surgery (which is a long and painful process requiring approximately nine months
to a year for full recovery), or give up the possibility of playing sports, even recreational sports, and possibly reinjuring
throughout the rest of your life to simply leave the knee as is. I decided that I’m young, I love sports, and I want to be
able to play with my kids (when I have them someday) for as long as possible. I opted for the surgery.
Now, agreeing to the surgery and thinking single mindedly of the end-result is great, though it is a bit lacking in
thoroughly understanding what all is involved.
First, there is surgery, which all surgery has a degree of risk. Second, there is the pain from surgery; which though I
consider myself to be of high pain tolerance, is certainly no picnic. Third, pain medicine sometimes does not agree with
certain people (me) and causes extreme nausea. And finally, all of the additional logistical concerns.
Well, I’ve alluded to it a few times now, but it is the single most frustrating aspect of injury that is always overlooked.
I honestly think that there is something in your brain, perhaps a defense mechanism, that causes you to overlook and forget these
Wearing a leg-brace from ankle to groin that is locked in a fixed straight position is ridiculous; advantageous to the healing
process but ridiculous to all other aspects of life. It’s like carrying around deadweight that jolts out at awkward angles to
your body. Getting into a car (only the passenger side) is a chore unto itself, driving is of course out of the question.
Rashes from the brace make you irritable as well as self conscious. Going to the restroom is difficult. Being forced to sleep
in a single position is difficult. Most people wouldn’t think about the pressure on your heels laying on your back causes.
Additionally, the brace can causes bruising itself; tight bands to keep you locked in place on the injured extremity as well
as bruising pressure points against the non-operated leg. The stiffness of your body, headaches from laying in bed so long as well as neck and back pains.
Crutches are an entire set of additional problems. Try to carry an open drink anywhere, how about a plate of food, how
about pretty much anything; not impossible, but very slow and difficult.
Losing the freedom to depend solely on yourself is mentally draining. Friends, family, and even strangers can be wonderful,
but of course you inevitably feel like a burden on them; especially those who love you and help you the most.
There are of course an unenviable infinite list of other small and large frustrations, but I do think it’s important to
realize, that it could be worse. That I am absolutely lucky that the pain and difficulty you go through during surgery is
often to make things better in the long run, and the simple fact that you have an option to make things better is worth
everything and warrants appreciation.
Still to come… but I am back to a place where I can begin working, writing, and living again; and for that I am
greatful and excited!